December 6th, 2019


Rainless Day

It was a long day, with three trips out, and being very tired around six o'clock I decided to take a nap. It lasted longer than I'd hoped it would, and I didn't wake up until after eleven. This sort of thing no longer surprises me, though it still displeases me. Waking up in darkness always leaves me a bit depressed, especially when I have slept through dinner time and have to figure out what to eat in the middle of the night. I got some tortillas at Trader Joe's earlier, so I jut melted some cheese in a couple of them and opened the last bottle of Sierra Nevada Summerfest lager. It's almost winter so it's about time to say goodbye to summer.

On the trips out I went to Grocery Outlet, and bought donuts, a Toblerone chocolate bar, apple juice, orange juice, another jar of Kalamata olives, and a couple of things I've not seen before: a small jar of roasted tomatoes and chilies, from Italy, and a package of lime shrimp ramen. I have no idea if either will be any good, but if they aren't they were at east cheap, and I won't be out much over a dollar. Later I went to CVS and picked up a six pack of beer and two bags of small candy bars left over from the Halloween stock and on sale for 99 cents each. They also had Kahlua on sale, so I bought two bottles for 21.98. With what I already had on hand that should last me well into spring.

Trader Joe's provided me with the mushrooms and onion I went for, plus the tortillas I bought on impulse, and which turn out to be pretty good, and a package of romaine hearts, for which TJ's charges less than any of the other stores around here. Who knew? And naturally I stopped at the Goodwill store, and found a fairly beat up copy of Whitman's writings, probably previously owned by at least three Chico State students, but quite serviceable. I know Whitman is all in the public domain, but he is one of the writers I feel I should have on paper.

So that was probably my last trip out at least until Monday, as three days of rain are coming up. It's likely to be windy, too, with the strongest winds on Saturday. I'm hoping there will be no power outages, and no local flooding. I don't feel like mopping up water in the cold. In Paradise I had a backup gas heater with no fan, so not dependent on electricity, and a gas range, so I could at least heat up a can of soup or beans when the power was out, but here I've got nothing. A winter power outage here would mean peanut butter and crackers for dinner, and layers of clothes and piles of blankets to stave off hypothermia. I hope the experience will be indefinitely delayed.

Bonus Hours

The rain was delayed, so morning and early afternoon brought some unexpected sunshine, and I took advantage of it to go to Kmart and buy a set of flannel sheets. Last time I was there the sheets were on sale for half price, and this time they were only 20% off, so I only bought the one set, and paid for most of it with my bonus cash I picked up last time. I didn't even have to use my debit card, since the total was less than a dollar, so I got some actual change— two quarters and two dimes, which I can use toward bus fare when I next go to do the banking.

Since it was still fairly early in the afternoon when I left Kmart I decided to stop at the real Mexican restaurant in the little shopping center on the route home, and picked up a ten dollar lunch plate. Adjusted for inflation that's about the same amount I used to pay for similar meals in the early 1960s, so I figured it's not that much of an extravagance (as long as I don't do it too often.) The difference is that restaurant portions are larger now, and my appetite being somewhat diminished with age I ended up overstuffed.

It was pretty good, though, and aside from the enchilada it was not as excessively salty as the last time I bought food there. I also remembered to request hot salsa rather than mild, which improved the food considerably. However, since the late lunch was so big I've been unable to work up enough appetite to eat dinner tonight, and from the way I feel at the moment it's unlikely that I will at all tonight, probably not even a bowl of ramen. Perhaps a cup of bullion at bedtime, which should be fairly early since I had no nap this evening.

Had I not been overstuffed after lunch I might have gone out again around three o'clock, to see if the Goodwill store had put any more interesting books on the shelves, but having eaten so much I was quite sluggish until nightfall. After that the rain began in earnest, and has continued since. The damp chill has induced me to raise the thermostat to 70 degrees, though later I'm sure this will become uncomfortably warm. For now it is pleasant, and even serves to slightly diminish the sense of loneliness this place always evokes when it becomes too chilly in here.

A flash flood warning has been issued for the burn scar on the ridge tomorrow, but I don't expect the rain will get intense enough to cause any flooding down here such as we had early in the year. Still it could be an impressive storm, with a possibility of some thunder and lightning, which also brings some possibility of a power outage. I'll try to remember to keep my phone charged. The forecast now says that the rain might ease up early on Sunday, and the afternoon might be dry enough that I could risk going out. That would be nice, since I don't relish being stuck indoors all day for two days in a row. Plus I could go to Dollar Tree and get a bag of their cheap cheese balls, which I had forgotten I've run out of. They make a nice, softly crunchy snack for old teeth that have difficulty with toughly crunchy chips anymore.

I'm thinking I might go read for a while now. I'm not hungry yet, and sitting in this chair and leaning my weak eyes into the monitor is starting to make my back uncomfortable. Leaning back on a pillow in bed and holding a book close to my weak eyes sounds like a nice change. Plus I have a chunk of chocolate to munch on. I might not be hungry for actual food, but there's always room for chocolate.